ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Rehearsals are underway at UAlbany for Jonathan Larson’s Pulitzer and Tony award-winning landmark rock musical, Rent. Five public performances will take place at the UAlbany Performing Arts Center on the uptown campus, from March 2-5.

The schedule includes performances on Thursday, March 2 at 8 p.m.; Friday, March 3 at 3 p.m.; Saturday, March 4 at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m.; and Sunday, March 5 at 2 p.m.

Directed by guest artist Chuck Kraus in his first-ever production at UAlbany, the student cast features a group of eight principal performers along with an ensemble of 16. Kraus is the Managing Director at Playhouse Stage Company—formerly Park Playhouse—where he has directed productions of Godspell, Little Shop of Horrors, and Urinetown, among others.

“Pain, struggle, heartache, sickness, and loss will happen to all of us. That these traumas happen to us is not unique. What has the chance to be unique is how we decide to respond,” explains Kraus. “Rent is about the response. It is about small acts of defiance. In a world that so often feels off the rails, the act of creation is in and of itself revolutionary.”

Musical direction for the UAlbany production is by Michael Lister with choreography by Ashley Simone Kirchner, both of whom are on the faculty of the college’s Department of Music and Theatre. Kirchner is also Associate Artistic Director at Playhouse Stage Company.

“Rent is an iconic piece of theater,” claims Lister. “Its relevance is timeless, and the theme of family – both the ones in which we are born and the ones we create for ourselves – is a theme that still resonates today.”

“It is a story about demanding freedom,” explains Kircher, “about celebrating one’s true self and their art. About creation and living life to the fullest despite your circumstances.”

Advance tickets are $20 for the general public and $17 for students, senior citizens, and UAlbany faculty staff. Tickets purchased on the day of the show are $25 for the general public and $22 for UAlbany faculty staff, seniors, and students. All tickets must be purchased online.